No Respect: Rams Clear Favorites Over 5-1 Bears Ahead Of Monday Night Football

Posted on October 19, 2020

The Los Angeles Rams are sizable favorites against the Chicago Bears as two possible playoff teams will clash on Monday Night Football.

The Rams, 4-2, took an uninspiring loss against the 49ers on Sunday. The Bears, meanwhile, beat the Panthers to improve to 5-1 — but we still don’t know if they’re good.

For what it’s worth, the betting market doesn’t seem to think so.

The Bears will kick off Monday’s game as underdogs for the sixth time this season despite their 5-1 record.

Here’s your betting preview, along with the top lines at Illinois online sportsbooks.

Bears @ Rams odds

There’s a point in most Bears games where you have more faith in the defense to score than the offense. That pretty much sums up the season thus far.

The Chicago defense is as advertised, and it’s been especially cruel to Rams quarterback Jared Goff over the last two seasons.

In two starts against the Bears over 2018 and 2019, Goff threw five interceptions to zero touchdowns.

And there hasn’t been a ton of personnel churn for the Bears defense or the Rams offense.

Chicago has played some of its best ball of the season over the past two weeks against the Buccaneers and Panthers, two quality offenses.

The Bears held both teams to under 20 points, and have notched two takeaways per game. Khalil Mack headlines the pass rush, but lesser-known players such as Mario Edwards Jr., Roy Robertson-Harris, and Bilal Nichols have also been disruptive.

The run defense was the Bears Achilles’ heel coming into Sunday. But the front seven held Mike Davis to 2.9 yards per carry.

The Rams offense presents a tough test, but it sputtered against the 49ers on Sunday. Goff averaged just 5.2 yards per pass attempt.

Los Angeles ranks 11th in total offense and 19th in scoring offense. And all four of its wins have come against the NFC East, easily the worst division in football.

To be fair, the Bears haven’t exactly faced a murderers’ row of opponents, either. Nonetheless, the Buccaneers win remains impressive, as Tampa Bay is 4-2 and just smoked the previously undefeated Packers by 28.

One game within the game that will be fun to watch is the Bears’ pass rush vs. the Rams’ offensive line.

Los Angeles only allows 1.2 sacks per game, tied for second-fewest in the NFL. While the Chicago pass rush got off to a slow start, it has really picked up steam the past two weeks, registering seven sacks in total.

Stop us if you’ve heard this before, but Bears offense could struggle

Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers diced up the Rams’ defense on Sunday. But Kyle Shanahan, Matt Nagy is not.

The Bears rank 28th in total offense, while the Rams rank fourth in total defense.

The Panthers had one of the worst run defenses in the league coming into Week 6, and Chicago averaged 2.5 yards per carry against it.

Offensive line play has been a big issue as of late. Left guard James Daniels is on IR with a torn pectoral muscle, and both players the Bears have tried to replace him with have stood out for all of the wrong reasons.

Nick Foles has been fine, but rarely has time to throw. There have been very few running lanes, and the play-calling is bizarre at best.

The Daniels injury could really sting against the Rams because they have Aaron Donald. Donald terrorized this Bears’ offensive line with Daniels last year, so to face him in 2020 is particularly daunting.

Allen Robinson is the Bears’ best offensive player, and the Rams have a shutdown corner to blanket him in Jalen Ramsey.

George Kittle found success against the Los Angeles middle on Sunday, and the Bears’ tight ends have been a small bright spot. Jimmy Graham has four touchdown catches on the season, and second-round rookie Cole Kmet hauled in his first on Sunday.

Still, there’s not a lot for the Bears to hang their hats on here. If Chicago can pull out another win, it’s hard to imagine the point total creeping much higher than 40.

Photo by AP / Brian Blanco
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Joe Boozell

Joe Boozell has also been a college sports writer for NCAA.com since 2015. His work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, FoxSports.com and NBA.com. Growing up, Boozell squared off against both Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicagoland basketball scene ... you can imagine how that went.

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